Scholarships for Children of Wounded and Fallen Military Members

The sacrifices of military service members and their families cannot be overstated. These brave individuals put their lives on the line to protect our nation, and when they are injured or killed in the line of duty, their families are left to pick up the pieces. This is where Folds of Honor comes in.

Folds of Honor is a non-profit organization that provides scholarships to the spouses and children of US military members who have been killed or disabled while serving. Established in 2007 by Lt. Col. Dan Rooney, the foundation has awarded nearly 44,000 scholarships totaling nearly $200 million. In 2022, Folds of Honor expanded its mission to include first responders, such as police, firefighters, EMTs, and paramedics, who respond to the approximately 240 million calls made to 9-1-1 each year.

This organization with a singular mission: to provide educational scholarships to the spouses and children of wounded or killed military service members. The organization operates respectfully to every partner, donor, and family it supports. It is proud to be considered a high-performing nonprofit that has achieved the highest-possible ratings by GuideStar and Charity Navigator.

One of the critical factors in Folds of Honor’s success is its commitment to transparency and accountability. The Charities Review Council recommends that at least 65 percent of a nonprofit’s three-year average annual expenses are used to directly support programming, with an ideal range between 70 percent and 90 percent. Folds of Honor is proud to report a cumulative average ratio of 91 percent of annual expenses supporting our scholarship program. 

This average can be derived from pages one and 10 of the Folds of Honor IRS Form 990. Financials were prepared by an independent accountant and reviewed by an audit committee.

In 2021, Folds of Honor awarded approximately $30 million educational scholarships to more than 6,000 students. Scholarships are valued at $5,000 and are awarded to qualifying spouses and children of fallen or disabled U.S. service members. Since its inception in 2007, Folds of Honor has been awarded nearly 35,000 scholarships in all 50 states. These scholarships provide opportunities for the recipients to pursue their dreams and achieve their full potential without the added financial burden of student debt.

The impact of Folds of Honor’s work cannot be overstated. The organization’s scholarships are life-changing for the recipients and their families. For many, the financial burden of a college education would be too great without this support. But beyond the financial assistance, the scholarships provide a sense of hope and a reminder that the sacrifices of their loved ones have not been forgotten.

Lieutenant Colonel Dan Rooney’s inspiration for starting Folds of Honor came from a personal experience. As an F-16 fighter pilot in the Oklahoma Air National Guard, he became painfully aware of the realities families face when a loved one in uniform is fallen or is disabled. As his flight landed from his second tour of duty in Iraq, the pilot announced they carried the remains of Corporal Brock Bucklin on board. 

Lt. Colonel Rooney watched Corporal Bucklin’s twin brother walk somberly alongside the flag-covered casket to meet his family on the tarmac. Among them was the deceased Corporal’s young son, Jacob. Jacob Bucklin became the first Folds of Honor scholarship recipient in 2007.

Since then, Folds of Honor has grown into a national organization with a profound impact. The scholarships it provides honor the sacrifices of military service members and their families and allow the recipients to pursue their dreams and achieve their full potential. Folds of Honor is committed to continuing this vital work and supporting the families of our nation’s heroes.

Folds of Honor relies on the generosity of individuals and corporations to support its mission and welcomes new corporate partners who want to get involved.

As we wrap up this article, it is essential to recognize that the Folds of Honor organization continues to significantly impact the lives of military families across the United States. The dedication and commitment of Lieutenant Colonel Dan Rooney to honoring the sacrifices of our nation’s heroes are genuinely inspiring. 

Through Folds of Honor, his mission to provide educational scholarships to the spouses and children of fallen or disabled service members has been made a reality.

If you are looking to support a noble cause and make a difference in the lives of these families, Folds of Honor is an organization you can confidently get behind. By partnering with them, you can help ensure that the children of our fallen and disabled service members receive the education they deserve.

Let us all take a moment to honor and remember the brave men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. And let us continue to support organizations like Folds of Honor that are dedicated to honoring their legacy and providing a brighter future for their families.

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